For all the amazing accomplishments and advances of humanity, we are still capable of terrible barbarism and unspeakable evil. One of the most terrible and shameful chapters of our history is marked by the remembrance of Kristallnacht, the “Night of Broken Glass.” These events of November 9 and 10, 1938, in Germany, are seen to be the symbolic start of the Holocaust, the systematic persecution and genocide of the Jews (and other groups) by the Nazis.
From Yad Veshem :
On November 9, 1938, the Nazis unleashed a series of riots against the Jews in Germany and Austria. In the space of a few hours, thousands of synagogues and Jewish businesses and homes were damaged or destroyed. For the first time, tens of thousands of Jews were sent to concentration camps simply because they were Jewish. This event came to be called Kristallnacht (“Night of the Broken Glass”) for the shattered store windowpanes that carpeted German streets. Kristallnacht was an essential turning point in Nazi Germany’s persecution of Jews, and a significant event in Holocaust history.
For more about Kristallnacht, click here. For educational resources click here.
Visit the full site of Yad Veshem for more information on the Holocaust. Other online sources include: